Four Keys for Hiring (and Retaining) Millennials

By Brad Davis

Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. professional workforce, representing 35% of all workers, according to the Pew Research Center. This generational shift has caused some painful transitions for employers as they must adapt to the changing needs of today’s workers. In order to hire and retain millennial employees, employers must better understand their generation’s work-related values, which differ in some significant ways from their parents’ beliefs. Here are four keys to successfully hiring (and retaining) millennials:

1. Social Media Is Here to Stay

Employers are beginning to discover that the comfort level younger people have with social platforms make them ideal tools for connecting with millennial candidates. In a 2020 survey by Jobvite, 46% of respondents said that social media was their primary recruitment investment focus in 2021. And it’s not only LinkedIn; the survey stated 60% of recruiters use Facebook to source candidates, while 37% and 38% use Instagram and Twitter, respectively. Recruiters and hiring managers can no longer afford to ignore social media as a crucial component of the sourcing process.

2. Work-Life Balance Is Essential

While millennials still value high salaries and tangible benefits, they are also more concerned with having a good work-life balance than previous generations. In 2022, Deloitte found that 39% of millennials consider work-life balance the most important reason for choosing a new job, a higher percentage than any other reason. To successfully hire and retain millennials, businesses need to ensure that their employees can still have a fulfilling life off the clock.

3. Don’t Fear Job-Hopping

A recent Gallup report found that 21% of millennials had changed jobs in the past year, which is three times more than older generations. In addition, The Muse found that 80% think it’s okay to quit a new job within six months if it’s not what they expected. Instead of fearing this job-hopping trend, employers should take the opportunity to improve benefits, flexibility, and culture to not only attract more millennials, but to keep them around for longer. This can create an overall positive cultural shift for all current and potential employees of all ages.

4. Diversity and Inclusion Are Top Priorities

It’s clear that diversity and inclusion have become a top priority for potential candidates, most especially for millennials. In the 2020 Jobvite survey, 33% of recruiters reported that more job-seekers are asking about D&I initiatives than in 2019. Furthermore, 83% of millennials report feeling more empowered and engaged in the workplace when they believe their company has an authentically inclusive culture, according to Deloitte. Today’s jobseekers no longer just prefer diverse workplaces, they require them.

By following these keys, employers and recruiters can ensure that workplaces reflect the changing values of the modern workforce. Embracing new technologies, improving benefits and workplace culture, and committing to authentic diversity will help hiring managers attract better talent, regardless of age.

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